NEW LONDON, Conn. – Senior Matt Butera (Westfield, Mass.) found the back of the net twice for the first time of his career in leading the Connecticut College men's soccer team to a 3-1 victory over Eastern Connecticut State on Tuesday afternoon at Freeman Field.
The teams played a scoreless deadlock through the opening 45 minutes of action. Even though both teams combined to unleash 12 shots, including five on target, many of them were either outside of the box or at difficult angles with both defenses holding their ground. Eastern Connecticut State arguably had the best opportunity of the half in the 32nd minute when an open Patrick Agyemang took a pass from Justin Jensen and unleashed a shot from the top of the box in transition, but his rocket aimed at the bottom right of the net was turned away by junior AJ Marcucci (West Chester, Pa.) and forced a corner kick. Camel defender Liam Donelan (Milton, Mass.) successfully headed the cross inside from Jensen away, and the match remained tied heading into recess.
The Camels quickly got on the scoreboard in the second half when sophomore Lorenzo Bocchetti (Wilmington, Del.) was taken down in the box and the team was awarded a penalty kick. Donelan converted to the upper 90, putting the hosts on the board less than three minutes into the second stanza.
Shortly afterwards, Connecticut College (6-1-2) doubled the margin and began pulling away in the 59th minute when sophomore Steve Yeonas (McLean,Va.) sent a cross in from the left corner that was initially deflected by a Warrior defender before finding the foot of Butera from the top of the box. The Warriors had an answer on the other end by earning a penalty kick of their own, as Emmanuel Agyemang beat Marcucci with a hard shot to the goalkeeper's left side in the 69th minute, but Butera struck again just 53 seconds later. The Camel senior, who entered the match with two goals in his career, finished a pass from sophomore Augie Djerdjaj (Mahopac, N.Y.) by sliding the ball past a challenging Kyle Boutot to put the match away.
Marcucci picked up the victory by making six saves for Connecticut College, which had a 19-11 advantage in total shots as well as a 4-3 edge in corner kick opportunities. Boutout of Eastern Connecticut State (10-2) redirected three shots in the setback.
Connecticut College will next host Bowdoin on Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. during Fall Weekend.